In early December, I started asking folks on my social networks what new goals they were setting for themselves – and their PR departments – in 2012. The mix of answers was interesting – and illuminating. Here are some of the standouts:
Developing personal networks: Several responders noted plans to participate in more online groups, social networks and real-life events in the coming year, in order to build their personal, professional networks, and their individual standings as industry experts.
- If building your professional network is one of your goals, in addition to LinkedIn and Twitter, consider joining Profnet Connect. This free community is geared toward PR and media pros, and boasts tens of thousands of members. In addition to connecting with peers, you can build a free search-engine friendly profile, and share your content via blog posts. Did we mention it’s free?
Media relations: There’s no doubt that media are still front and center for PR pros, despite what you read about the demise of traditional media and its waning influence. Fact is, stories from traditional media are the primary fuel source for online conversations. And search engines still give media sites high rankings. These are two very good reasons for PR pros to keep media relations at the top of the tactics list for 2012. Specific resolutions within the media relations category included:
- Developing strong working relationships with more journalists
- Taking a more hands-on approach to pitching, and following up all pitches, press releases and other communications
- Paying more attention to local and regional media – develop relationships and find story angles to pitch to them.
Start blogging/blog consistently: Starting a blog and blogging consistently were also common responses. The objectives for these blogging activities were mixed – some related to brand blogs, other folks were referring to personal blogs. Speaking as one who does both branded and personal blogging, I can’t emphasize enough the value of doing so. Blogs are a fantastic communications channel for brands, and if you commit to blogging consistently, you’ll be amazed at how your writing improves – and how the stories start to flow more easily.
Monitor, measure … and benchmark: Not surprisingly, measuring outcomes and monitoring social environments were top of mind for the PR pros responding to my query. Several people mentioned plans to ramp up monitoring for 2012, and also noted they planned to build KPIs (“key performance indicators”) and tie the activity measured to business performance. This key step will enable them to connect campaigns with outcomes, and also to identify messages and tactics that worked best for their respective businesses.
Build a presence in social media for the brand: More social media holdouts will be climbing on the bandwagon in 2012, as many indicated that this would be the year they start building social presences for their brand. If you are among this group, and need a little help, our free ebook, “Unlocking Social Media for PR” might help.
What are you resolving to do in 2012?
Word cloud image created using Wordle, which is really fun and easy to use. And it’s free. What’s not to love?